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Graduate Assistantships: Democracy Program

  • Voters stood for hours in long lines at a polling station in Ngong, on the outskirts of Nairobi, Kenya, on Aug. 8, 2017. The Carter Center deployed an international delegation to observe Kenya's contentious elections. (Photo: The Carter Center)

The Carter Center's Democracy Program (DP) is seeking a qualified graduate student for the 2021-2022 session to conduct research and analysis related to one or both of the following two DP research projects.

Social Media and Digital Information Environment. The first project is to conduct research and analysis to support DP’s efforts to develop methods and tools to assess the role and impact of social media and other aspects of the digital information environment on elections and related political processes, including key issues identified by the academic and practitioner communities. Working with the program director, the DP graduate assistant will prepare 2-3 working papers/research reports analyzing key issues.

Indicators of Election Integrity and Democratic Governance. The second project focuses on indicators and measures for assessing the integrity of elections, both as a whole and via sub-variables related to election quality. The overall aim of the research is to develop consistent sets of indicators and measures for election missions’ assessments of electoral integrity and democratic governance more broadly. Working the program director, the DP graduate assistant will be expected to expand on the research conducted to date by program and to prepare 2-3 working papers summarizing key issues.

The graduate assistant will be expected to:

Produce 2-3 research papers on key topics and issues, related either to measures and indicators of election integrity and democratic governance, and/or social media and the digital information environment around elections. At least one of the papers should be of sufficient quality to deliver at an academic conference, possibly in connection with the Electoral Integrity Project (EIP, see: Key benchmarks for review will be completion of draft research paper proposals, and detailed annotated outline for the proposed paper(s) assessed through weekly meetings with DP director.


-Currently enrolled graduate or doctoral student who has completed at least two semesters of academic coursework in a master’s or post-master’s level program

-A 20-hour per week commitment for a period of 9-12 months

-Strong research, writing, and analytical skills

-Strong quantitative skills (e.g., R and/or Stata or similar) and experience with a range of ICT tools

-Demonstrated interest in democratic elections, democracy and governance, and/or democratic transitions and awareness of the current literature and key issues

-Familiarity with public debate and scholarship on the impact of social media and the internet on democratic governance preferred

-Should have completed at least one graduate course focused on democracy and elections, or democracy promotion, and be familiar with key literature of democracy and elections

-Experience with public international law is a plus, as is practical experience in international democracy assistance and/or election observation

Apply today »

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Assistantship Deadlines

Apply for a Carter Center Graduate Assistantship

The 2021-22 graduate assistantship application opens on Feb. 5, 2021 and closes on April 8, 2021.

Program: 9-12 MONTHS
(August start)

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